New York State is set to drop the city’s plastic waste program entirely, in a move that would save the state $5 million in waste and recycling costs by 2023.
The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said Monday that it will be cutting the citywide program in half in 2022 and 2023, and in 2020.
Under the new plan, which was announced last month, garbage, recyclables and plastic packaging will be distributed to the community on a voluntary basis.
Instead of recycling a whole ton of plastic bags, for example, trash will be recycled in bulk, while recyclable paper and cardboard packaging will remain at home.
The program will also be reduced to three bins, one for plastics, one plastic and one for cardboard.
“These programs have helped us cut waste and save taxpayers millions of dollars over the last few years,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Anthony Fauci.
The program was launched in 2013 to help residents reduce plastic bags and plastic waste.
It has been scaled back by about 80 percent since that time, though it is still used by about 1 million people a year.
The department has also reduced the number of plastic items collected.
The move comes after Gov.
Andrew Cuomo signed legislation earlier this year to expand plastic recycling and storage in New York state.